The Short Humour Site

Home : Writers' Showcase : Submission Guidelines : A Man of a Few More Words : Links

Writers' Showcase

Our South African Boer Cousins 3
by Albert Russo

While I was still dreaming of a white Christmas - how can that happen when you’re in South Africa, where December is Summer and sizzling? - my burrah cousins were already tending to their animals, filling up their mangers, delivering a calf or giving drugs to those who caught a virus, a bad cold or had diarrhea - what a word! And when it gets real bad, how do you write it? Diaarrrhhheeooaa? Before you even finish saying this you’re drained, inside out, specially inside. Apparently mad cow disease hasn't gotten here yet. It's enough that the country has the highest rate of HIV in the world. Before President Zumba took office, the Minister of Health claimed that you could get rid of AIDS by eating beetroot and garlic. How thtoopid can one be, and criminal too, coz people believed it and many patients died, listening to that bunk.

Everywhere you turn here there's a puff of dung mixed with that of straw and burnt feathers. So much so that, in the beginning, I kept smelling my armpits, thinking I was the one having BO, and spreading it around me. But no matter how many times you shower, the smell remains, you'd think that even the soap is made out of it. I oughta launch a new sustainable perfume and call it 'Dung'o feathers' for all of them nature lovers fed up with their polluted city life.

Between meals Kif kept chomping on something that was dark red and stringy. When I asked him if he was chewing gum, he guffawed and minutes later he came back from the pantry with what I believed was a piece of bark. He then handed it to me and said:

“This is the best lekker biltong you will find in the country, we make it right here at home, using the finest rump beef. After you get all the blood out, you cure and smoke it and then let it dry for at least three days, sometimes even a whole week. Come on, taste it and tell me what you think.”

It looked a bit disgusting to me, specially after his explanation. I hesitated for a while then started munching on it very slowly, and the more I munched, the more I liked the stuff, tough and stringy as it was. You have that spicy taste of dry meat lingering at the back of your tongue, yet, at the same time you get addicted to it and keep chewing cowwise like there's no tomorrow, which gets on your bloomin' nerves, so much so that I felt like pinching my uncle every now and then, as a preventive measure, coz he always eventually comes out with some cocky bulldog story that drives me up the wall.

Pharmacists all over the world oughta sell biltong to all and sundry fatsos, on account that you can chew the same piece of meat all day long and have the impreshun you've had a good and lasting meal, sans the calories.

From the GOSH ZAPINETTE! series (15 episodes in all), by Albert Russo.
13/9//21 Excerpted from Zulu Zapy wins the Rainbow Nation